Get in quick to help British track riders get ready for London

Newport City Council and British Cycling have announced extra open sessions for the public to watch Team GB make their final preparations at the Wales National Velodrome, Newport.

Two extra open sessions will be held on Monday 23 and Tuesday 24 July. Members of the public are invited to come along and quite literally make some noise to help the riders prepare for the conditions they will face in London 2012.

At the Games, “track cyclists will be under pressure to replicate the success of Beijing and will face a cauldron of noise. The open sessions at Newport Velodrome will provide the same environment they will face in London in just a few days time and provide the ideal build up,” says the announcement from Newport City COuncil.

Tickets are free of charge and are available to reserve from 9.30am on Thursday 19 July at the Newport city website or by calling Newport City Council’s contact centre on 01633 656656.

Both sessions will run from 2pm to 4pm and all tickets will be seated.

Demand is expected to be high, so , only two tickets per person will be available and will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis. Once you have registered, tickets will be available to collect from the Velodrome from 12.30pm the day of the session you have booked for.

Our official grumpy Northerner, John has been riding bikes for over 30 years since discovering as an uncoordinated teen that a sport could be fun if it didn't require you to catch a ball or get in the way of a hulking prop forward.

Road touring was followed by mountain biking and a career racing in the mud that was as brief as it was unsuccessful.

Somewhere along the line came the discovery that he could string a few words together, followed by the even more remarkable discovery that people were mug enough to pay for this rather than expecting him to do an honest day's work. He's pretty certain he's worked for even more bike publications than Mat Brett.

The inevitable 30-something MAMIL transition saw him shift to skinny tyres and these days he lives in Cambridge where the lack of hills is more than made up for by the headwinds.